Blake, Verdasco, Zheng & Bondarenko reviving

F-Lo punched past Ferrero

Feliciano Lopez d Juan Carlos Ferrero 4-6 6-3 6-4

The quality wins just keep piling up for F-Lo, who has become much more effective on hard courts. This may be the frequently injured Ferrero’s last summer hard court season.

Alex Bogomolov d Robby Ginepri 6-4 6-3

Props to Bogomolov for cracking the top 50 for the first time and getting a win over an old foe from the juniors. You have to wonder if Ginepri will be asked to play the US Open wild card playoff, or get a main draw wild card, or be forced to go through qualifying.

 

David Nalbandian d Kei Nishikori 6-4 6-4

Nishikori gets injured way too much and even with a good coach in Brad Gilbert cannot seem to make a significant push into the top 30. Nalbandian is solid when he’s healthy, but it’s time for Japan’s top player to start putting up some bigger wins.

Richard Gasquet d Alex Dolgopolov 6-1, 7-6

I’m not sure of the value of Dolgopolov winning Umag on clay if he’s going to drop decisions to Berdych in Montreal and Gasquet in Cincy. Ranked No. 22, his focus should be peaking at the US Open, not grabbing guarantees at post Wimbledon clay court events.

Fernando Verdasco d Thomaz Bellucci 6-3 7-6

It’s possible that Verdasco may be showing signs of life again as this a quality victory over a tough foe. While I don’t agree with his decision to play two clay court events post Wimby, he is a veteran and knows how to readjust his game better than Dolgo does. But will it come soon enough?

James Blake d Marcos Baghdatis 3-6 6-3 6-2 (from Monday)

Blake has not faded quickly into the night this season and really is starting to play a decent brand of ball. Don’t count him out of pulling a US Open upset.

Juan Martin Del Potro beat Andreas Seppi (ret) 4-1 (from Monday)

DelPo gets to shot at Roger Federer, whom he bested the last two times they played in 2009. But Federer has been at a higher level overall this year. If DelPo can’t play the Swiss tough here, don’t expect any real US Open magic.

Andrea Petkovic d. Jarmila Gajdosova 5-7 7-6(5) 6-2

This was marathon contest with a slew of unforced errors. Both women needed the win and Gajdosova was apparently peeved after the loss.

Zheng Jie d Julia Goerges 6-2 1-6 6-4

It’s nice to see Zheng rallying again as she is an excellent player who has had a tough time with injuries. Goerges may have a big forehand but she has had an awful four weeks on hard courts.

Svetlana Kuznetsova d Jill Craybas 6-3 6-4

It looks like Sveta is interested in tennis again, at least for today. My has she ever been out of the elite picture.

Chanelle Scheepers d Rebecca Marino 7-5 6-2

Scheepers is under rated but Marino has had a lousy stretch on hard courts. She’s been way too inconsistent. Remember all that excitement in Canada in February when Miles Raonic won San Jose and Marino reached the final of Memphis? Its been tempered now.

Alona Bondarenko d Ayumi Morita 6-2 4-6 6-2

Given that Morita has been rising this is an excellent win from Bondarenko, who has been working her way back from injury. She is spunky enough to make another run at the top 20.

Sara Errani d Sloane Stephens 6-1 7-5

Errani is a cagey competitor but this was a winnable match for the teenager Stephens. She must not have been able to work the points long enough. Back to school.

Shahar Peer d Sabine Lisicki 6-4 7-6(4)

An excellent win by the usually steady and gritty Peer over the up and down German. You have to wonder if Lisicki has lost some energy due to a heavy schedule.

 

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